Investing in energy ventures has traditionally been associated as having greater potential returns, with corresponding risks, than any other type of investment. The high-risk/high-potential of certain categories of these ventures (commonly referred to as “wildcats”) drove investment for many years. There are many such opportunities available today. However, the Fund’s oil and gas investment strategy is to focus on projects where risk dollars are substantially moderated and returns of 20% to 40% are the expected norm.
Risk and at-risk dollars are moderated by investing in projects fitting three categories. In order of decreasing risk, these are:
1. Possible Reserves: Known, productive zones within a field where additional reserves may be separated from proved reserves by faulting. These types of projects are of significant interest among independent energy companies and investors because geological data from existing wells is available to aid in developing the geological hypothesis. Both risk and at-risk dollars are moderated because the existing geological evidence dramatically increases the probability of success.
2. Probable Reserves: These type of projects involve re-entering abandoned oil and natural gas wells to test potentially productive natural gas zones bypassed when natural gas prices were under $0.75 per thousand cubic feet (MCF). Natural gas is now over $5.00 per MCF and is expected to increase in value as the push for cleaner burning, non-imported fuels grows stronger. Risk is moderated because geological data from the original well is available to develop the geological hypothesis, thus increasing the likelihood for a successful new well.
3. Proven Reserves: The most actively pursued subcategory today. After a discovery well locates hydrocarbons in commercial quantities, a multi-well drilling program to exploit newly discovered reserves commences. The exciting part of these projects is that in many cases, the major oil companies have already discovered the field, yet it fails to meet their minimum size criteria (For example: Large oil companies usually will not even consider developing a field unless it is at least a 50 to 500 well project. A 3 to 4 well project is not worth their time. Yet, to a smaller independent and their private individual investors, a 3 to 4 well project can be quite lucrative. Smaller independents, if they have the capital, can pick up the “nuggets” that the major oil companies leave behind.
In order of decreasing risk, both risk and at-risk dollars are moderated by investing in:
1. A known productive zone in a field where reserves may be separated from proved reserves via faulting.
2. Re-entering abandoned oil & gas wells to test for productive natural gas zones.
3. A multi-well drilling program to exploit proven reserves.
Article was written by Mouser57 Online Stock Trading